Feel the Joe-mentum: Joe Sestak is running for President. And he has a unique message!
He detailed the threat he sees to the United States from climate change, China, the rising influence of money in politics, and a lack of trust in government.
“The president is not the problem,” he said. “He is the symptom of the problem people see in a system that is not fair and accountable to the people for far too long.”
Sadly, Sestak’s thesis has been roundly disproved.
[A]ccording to what is arguably the next-best measure of class, household income, Trump supporters didn’t look overwhelmingly “working class” during the primaries. To the contrary, many polls showed that Trump supporters were mostly affluent Republicans. For example, a March 2016 NBC survey that we analyzed showed that only a third of Trump supporters had household incomes at or below the national median of about $50,000. Another third made $50,000 to $100,000, and another third made $100,000 or more and that was true even when we limited the analysis to only non-Hispanic whites. If being working class means being in the bottom half of the income distribution, the vast majority of Trump supporters during the primaries were not working class.
The retired admiral’s entrance is sure to piss off the party establishment, which never liked him to begin with. Sestak scuttled their plans to run Republican-turned-Democrat Arlen Specter, defeating the GOP expatriate in the 2010 primary before losing to Pat Toomey. It didn’t go over well with progressives, even those who didn’t like Sestak to begin with.
Sestak’s calm seemed like a forced effort to hide a volcanic temper. That was back when Sestak was merely a candidate for office. Once in office, he immediately began abusing his staff by making them work ridiculous hours at about the lowest pay-rate on Capitol Hill. It didn’t take me long to hear about it. He went through five press secretaries and a couple of chiefs of staff in his first year. I felt that my first impression of Sestak had been correct. He campaigns like he’s Mr. Rogers but behind the scenes he’s real son-of-a-bitch hard-ass. I don’t trust people like that, and a lot of people here feel the same way…
…the truth is that I don’t give a shit who wins. I’m not sure, but I think my vote may be canceled out in my own household. Like I said, you’d probably be shocked to know how much (tepid, reluctant) support that Specter has here from progressives. And I’ve got very little to work with to argue with them. It comes down to, for me, that I ain’t voting for Specter. Call me a Yellow Dog.
Pennsylvania Democrats, who also managed lose against pedophile-protecting, unlovable Tom Corbett that same year and ran a personality-free energy lobbyist against Toomey only to lose again in 2016, have never forgiven Sestak for what appears to be their own foolishness.
Like the majority of rank and file Pennsylvania Democrats who voted in 2010, I was Sestak supporter back in the day. Now, however, his candidacy is as serious as my ministry. His website looks like it was put together as part of a high school extra credit project. he has entered the race way too late, with a generic message that’s not going to resonate with the voters he needs. “The president is not the problem?” Tell that to the transgender and gay people he’s trying to strip of their rights. Tell that to the migrant children in cages. Tell that to Jamal Khashoggi’s wife and children. Tell that to the family of Heather Heyer.
I could go on at length disproving Sestak’s questionable proposal, but there’s no need to. Sestak’s time was past when he wasn’t able to get his party to back him in 2010, and reinforced when he lost to a mush-mouth like McGinty in 2016. He’s not helping himself or the party now.
Joe Sestak should pledge to campaign for whoever wins the 2020 Democratic primary. Then he should go away and devote more time to his family or whatever until he’s needed.
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